Evart runner set for final season, plus future career at Cornerstone

Grace Hamilton
Grace Hamilton

EVART — Grace Hamilton is looking forward to a healthy and productive senior season for Evart’s girls track team.

Hamilton knows where she’ll be running after she graduates from Evart. She has secured a scholarship to run cross country and indoor-outdoor track at Cornerstone University in Grand Rapids.

“There were a lot of different places that talked to me,” Hamilton said. “But their (Cornerstone) coaches came to a bunch of my meets and they definitely showed the most interest.”

Cornerstone currently does not have its own outdoor track but features a small indoor track.

“I’m very excited,” Hamilton said. “The coaches are great and their team has been really good the past three years.”

In track for Evart, Hamilton will be in the 4x800, the 1,600 and 3,200-meter runs. She’s qualified the past two seasons for the state finals in the 3,200 meters. Her best time is a 12:30.

“I was out for most of the season last year due to knee injury,” she said. “So I’m hoping to drop way down on that.”

Hamilton ran as much as she could last season but didn’t train as much as she would have preferred.

“I started in about May, full training,” she said. “I’m so excited. I’m shooting for the school record and all-state in the two-mile. I had a great cross country season. It was awesome to finish all-state.”

Evart is in its fourth week of preseason practice. At the Grand Valley State Indoor Invitational, Hamilton placed seventh in the 1,600 meters in 5:53.50 and 10th in the 800 meters in 2:42.11.

“We’re going to be strong,” Hamilton said. “We have a deep team. We have a lot of people that will be able to back up the top runners. I think our 4x800 will be very competitive. That’s exciting.”

Evart will be going on break at the end of this week. The first meet after break is scheduled to be at Mesick April 17. The first home meet is April 24 with Kingsley.

“It’s looking very strong,” Hamilton said. “We have people in every event that will be top competitors.”

The poor start to spring weather has not actually hampered Evart’s distance runners.

“We’ve been going outside and training,” Hamilton said. “That’s helping us be stronger.”